APPROVED

 

TOWN OF PELHAM

PLANNING BOARD MEETING/WORK SESSION

May 21, 2001   

 

The Chairman, Victor Danevich called the meeting to order at 7:30 pm.

 

The Secretary, Bill Scanzani, called the roll:

 

PRESENT:

Victor Danevich, Paddy Culbert, Bill Scanzani, Peter McNamara, Alternate Gael Ouellette,  Selectmen’s Representative Hal Lynde (arrived at approximately 7:40 pm), Interim Planning Director Clay Mitchell

 

ABSENT:

Jeff Gowan, Henry DeLuca, Alternate Richard Foote

 

Mr. Danevich noted that Ms. Ouellette would vote for Mr. Gowan in his absence.

 

DISCUSSION

 

Subdivision Regulations

 

Mr. Mitchell provided a draft copy of proposed changes to the Subdivision Regulations (RSA 674:36, II).  He reviewed the proposed changes and said the revisions would be ready for posting at the next work session.

 

Mr. Lynde arrived.

 

Outstanding Bond Review and Bond Process Review

 

Mr. Danevich said the outstanding bond review had been tabled until another time.  He said that the Planning Department was pursuing having the bonds handled by Town Counsel. 

 

NEW BUSINESS 

 

ML 12-41 & 12-43 Hearthstone Realty - Spring Street Conceptual Discussion

 

Mr. Bill Parkins, Hearthstone Realty, presented the conceptual plan to the Board.  He described the lot location.  He said that he discussed the possible connection to Shephard Road with Mr. Peter Zohdi of Herbert Associates, whom was in the process of creating a subdivision in the area.  Mr. Parkins informed there was currently a 10-15 acre pond on the site, which they would like to clean up for wildlife use.  He noted there was a bond for a hydrant to be installed at the pond for emergency use.  He then discussed the soil types and said maps would be provided with the subdivision plans.  Mr. Parkins explained that they had drawn up three conventional plan options for review, although he preferred open space designs.  He described the option A plan, which were 37 lots and no designated conservation land.  He then described the option B plan that was 35 lots and explained the road system.  With option B there would be approximately 26 acres of open space and have a possible trail network.  Mr. Parkins ended with option C that was similar to option B.  He said that the conservation area would be approximately 28 acres and would have the ability to connect to adjacent Town owned parcels.  

 

The Board’s preference was the option C plan. 

 

Mr. Culbert felt that the future roads in phase II, of option C should be noted as temporary cul-de-sacs.  He also said that the Board preferred lots to be squared off.  There was a brief discussion regarding the requirements of the ordinance and HISS.  Mr. Scanzani didn’t feel that a waiver of HISS would be granted other than for protection in this instance.  Mr. Culbert said that because the soils had not been done, it couldn’t be decided.  He said he would not be willing to waiver HISS unless the Board could review percentages. 

 

Mr. Danevich summarized that the Board preferred option C because of the land deeded to the Town and the road connectivity to Spring Street Extension being through Pelham instead of Dracut.  Mr. Mitchell asked if the Board would be willing to give a favorable recommendation for a swap for an easement.  Mr. Danevich answered yes and said it was the Board of Selectmen’s jurisdiction.  Mr. Scanzani asked that the Town owned land be reviewed in order to confirm if a road access through it was possible. 

 

Mr. Lynde asked about the damn on the pond.  Mr. Parkins said that it was a concrete ware and the beavers had taken over.  He said it would have to be cleaned up and suggested that the Board walk the site. 

 

ML 8-20 & 8-22 Gaudet - Old Gage Hill Road South - Conceptual Discussion

 

Mr. Peter Zohdi, Herbert Associates, presented the conceptual plan to the Board.  He gave a brief history of the site and the surrounding area.  He said there were minimum wetland crossings and explained that the main issue was the length of the road being 1800’.  He discussed options to connect the proposed plan to the adjacent, previously approved 9-lot subdivision. 

 

Mr. Scanzani asked about the undeveloped land in the back owned by the golf course.  Mr. Zohdi felt the only connection in the future would be to Old Bridge Street through land currently owned by Ms. Carolyn Law, or unless the owner of the golf course divided the land to create a connection to Old Bridge Street.  He said he could come back with a plan that showed the area discussed.  Mr. Zohdi felt the connection he was proposing was the best way to preserve the current wildlife corridor. 

 

Mr. Culbert said he wanted to see a cistern added.  Mr. Zohdi said he would comply with the Fire Chief and NFPA 1 and would also add a note to the plan. 

 

Mr. Scanzani asked if the land was flat.  Mr. Zohdi said he would cut a little, but then would work with the slope of the land.  Mr. Danevich asked what the percent of the first big slope was.  Mr. Zohdi said it was 6%. 

 

Mr. Lynde didn’t feel that the Board should be approving an 1800’ road and suggested ending the road before the wetland crossing.  He also noted that there wasn’t any open space provided for the Town. 

 

Mr. Danevich said the Board would be willing to entertain the plan, but cul-de-sac length issue would need to be discussed when the Board had more members present.  He said the powerline crossing wasn’t encouraged.  Mr. Zohdi wanted to explain that most of the lots were accessed after the wetland crossing and the only other way to access would be to go through the powerlines.  He asked that the Board work with him.  Mr. Danevich said there were two conflicting issues were the conservation of wildlife corridors, and the second was the connectivity of roads.  Mr. Zohdi felt the length of cul-de-sac was a mute point.  He discussed how surrounding Towns handled.  Mr. Danevich said that Mr. Culbert was heading the cul-de-sac work group and would be providing guidance to the Board. 

 

Mr. Zohdi said he would like to continue with the subdivision and work with the Planning Director. 

 

Mr. Scanzani asked which lots had proposed frontage on Old Gage Hill Road.  Mr. Zohdi said there was one lot with a driveway onto Old Gage Hill Road, another lot that was existing since the 1960’s that currently had a house and one lot that would have a driveway onto a proposed road.  Mr. Scanzani asked if there were any plans for the existing house.  Mr. Zohdi answered no. 

 

Ms. Ouellette asked how extensive the wetlands were.  Mr. Zohdi said it was less than 3000 square feet.  Ms. Ouellette asked if there was any way to curve the road.  Mr. Zohdi said the crossing was at the narrowest point of the wetlands. 

 

Mr. Culbert asked that the lots be squared.  Mr. Zohdi said he would. 

 

ML 10-281 Zegouras - 32 Bridge Street - Site Plan Review

 

Mr. Scanzani read aloud the list of abutters. There were no persons present whom did not have their name read. 

 

Mr. James Giarrusso, Bohler Engineering, presented the plan to the Board.  He explained that as part of the roadway construction on Route 38, the state had requested that the i.d. sign be moved.  He described the layout and discussed the proposed location for the i.d. sign.  He said it would be 25’-30’ from the roadway, but 5’ from the right-of-way line on the corner of Coburn Drive. 

 

Mr. Scanzani asked what size the existing sign was.  Mr. Giarrusso said it was approximately 12 1/2’H x 5’W and informed that the new sign would be approximately 18’H x  8’3”W, approximately 80 square feet total, and internally illuminated. 

 

Mr. Culbert asked if they would apply and get all state and federal licenses.  Mr. Giarrusso answered yes. 

 

Mr. Danevich clarified that there would be no increase in service.  Mr. Giarrusso answered yes. He said the only thing they were doing was moving the i.d. sign.  He said the details had been worked out with the DOT. 

 

Mr. Mitchell said the Code Enforcement Officer administered the sign ordinance and the only issue for the Board was placement.  He made it clear that approval by the Board would not validate the size of the sign, but merely the placement.

 

Mr. Mitchell said the Board could condition the approval on a safe site distance for entering and exiting Coburn Avenue. 

 

Mr. Scanzani was concerned with the proposed area. Mr. Giarrusso said the placement would be approximately 30’ back from the reconstructed area and would not block visibility.  Mr. Scanzani asked if the proposed sign would be on the property or the right-of-way.  Mr. Giarrusso said it would be on the Zegouras property and explained that there was no right-of-way layout and the state based their measurements from the center point in the road. 

 

PUBLIC INPUT

 

Mr. Leo Goyette, Coburn Avenue said there was currently a traffic problem from Coburn to Bridge Street.  He asked if the sign could be moved to the other side of the property.  Mr. Giarrusso said the section of Coburn Avenue onto Route 38 was not currently defined, but would be after the reconstruction.  He said the location was the best spot for visibility and had been worked out with the DOT.  He said the sign did not glow or reflect light back to Coburn Avenue. 

 

Mr. Phil Kane, Theriault Drive believed if the sign were placed on the other side of the property there would still be visibility from the road.  Mr. Giarrusso discussed the layout and said the site had been reviewed with the DOT for the best location of the sign. 

 

Mr. Goyette spoke for Mr. Al Spencer, Coburn Avenue who could not attend the meeting.  He said that the sign would be located approximately 30’-40’ from Mr. Spencer’s home.  Mr. Giarrusso said the sign was proposed to be approximately 5’ from the edge of the road and informed that the Zegouras property was 200’ deep. 

 

Mr. Danevich asked if the sign could be placed in the center isle.  Mr. Giarrusso answered no.  Mr. Danevich discussed the lighting concern and asked if there could be light deflectors.  Mr. Giarrusso said he could work something out, but didn’t feel there was currently a problem.  Mr. Culbert asked when the sign would be illuminated.  Mr. Giarrusso said it would only be lit during the hours of operation. 

 

Mr. Scanzani suggested requesting a smaller sign and didn’t feel the proposed should be larger than the existing sign.  Mr. Lynde asked if there was a limitation in the regulations.  Mr. Mitchell said 18’ and 50 square feet.  He said the ordinance was drafted in a way so the Code Enforcement Officer was the only one who regulates the size of the sign.  He said unless the sign created off-site impact, which the Board could review as part of site plan review.  Mr. Scanzani felt because the site abutted a residential zone, the Board could review the size as part of the approval.  Mr. Mitchell said the Board could regulate the site and lighting to the extent that it had an off-site impact. 

 

Mr. Mitchell felt the plans were complete to the extent for the Board to take jurisdiction. 

 

Mr. Culbert said he would like to have the light buffered from the residential area.  Mr. Giarrusso said he would.

 

MOTION:

(Culbert/McNamara) To accept the plan for consideration.

 

VOTE:  

(6 - 0 - 0) The motion carries.

 

Mr. Scanzani didn’t feel that the plan was ready for approval until the impact of the size of the sign was reviewed further.  He didn’t feel that plantings would help buffer the impact.  He felt that there should be a size and height limitation.

 

Mr. Culbert made a motion to approve the plan so the sign met the regulations of 50 square feet and the lighting to be buffered from Coburn Avenue to be esthetically pleasing because it abutted a residential zone.  Mr. Lynde seconded the motion.  Mr. Danevich made a friendly amendment to have the conditions as follows: 1) maximum height of 12’; 2) maximum applied with the spec. at 50 square feet; 3) light dampering system to block the offset light toward the residential area impact; and 4) evergreen planting to help naturally shade.  Mr. Culbert and Mr. Lynde agreed to the wording.  There was further discussion regarding the sign height.  Mr. Culbert amended his motion, Mr. Lynde amended his second to have the sign be a maximum of 8 1/2’ W.  It was suggested to also limit the hours of illumination.  Mr. Culbert and Mr. Lynde further amended the motion. 

 

Mr. Mitchell noted that the Board was making an independent judgement based on the authority found in the site plan review regulation that the size and height of the sign shall be limited due to the proximity and interference with residential land uses.

 

MOTION:

(Culbert/Lynde) To approve the plan with the following conditions:

1) maximum height of 12’

2) width not to exceed 8 1/2’;

3) overall sign not to exceed 50 square feet;

4) light dampering system to block and offset light toward the residential area;

5) evergreen planting to help naturally shade and absorb light. 

6) limit the hours of illumination to be only during operating hours.

VOTE:  

(6 - 0 - 0) The motion carries.

 

 

 

ML 7-117 Lee Milts Petroleum Corp. - 135 Bridge Street - Site Plan Review

 

Mr. Scanzani read aloud the list of abutters. There were no persons present whom did not have their name read.

 

Mr. James Giarrusso, Bohler Engineering, presented the plan to the Board.  He said that they were proposing to replace the i.d. sign, and add a freestanding canopy.  He said as part of the new canopy project they were proposing a new pump island.  He said they would not be increasing fueling positions or changing traffic patterns. 

 

Mr. Scanzani asked if there were plans to add diesel fuel.  Mr. Giarrusso answered no.

 

Mr. Mitchell discussed his concerns.  He pointed out that the size exceeded the requirements.  He said the canopy had the following issues: 1) lighting; and 2) canopy located in front setback.  He discussed the options the Board had before then regarding the canopy placement, one of which being a natural expansion.  Mr. Scanzani felt that the canopy was a natural expansion.  He discussed his reasons in favor of the canopy based on the sensitive nature of the wetland in back of the site and felt that it was a good protection against unwanted gasoline runoff from the concrete mat.  Mr. Culbert asked how a fuel spill was handled.  Mr. Giarrusso said there were containment provisions at the tanks and explained that under the proposed design they would add a positive limiting barrier. 

 

Mr. Mitchell was concerned with the canopy lighting.   Mr. Giarrusso discussed the type of lighting proposed and said it would be fixed inside the canopy and would not hang down.  Mr. Culbert about the height of the free standing sign.  Mr. Giarrusso said the proposed would be about the same height. 

 

Ms. Ouellette discussed the height of the sign.  Mr. Giarrusso said he would have a problem making the sign shorter because the business was not located in a residential area.  He felt there would be a disadvantage to on a business standpoint.  Mr. Scanzani didn’t have a problem with the height, but felt the size may be a problem.  Mr. Giarrusso believed the current sign was 10’ x 5’ and said the proposed would be approximately  8’ x 3’ and said in total it would be 72 or 73 square feet.  Mr. Danevich asked Mr. Mitchell about a case (in Conway)of perpetual use of a sign. 

 

Mr. Danevich informed that the Board did not have a problem with the height and width of the sign and said that it shouldn’t exceed the square footage referenced in the regulations.  Mr. Scanzani felt that as part of the whole site review the sign should conform with the regulations.  Mr. Danevich asked if the sign adjustment was voluntary or requested by the state as part of the Route 38 reconstruction project.  Mr. Giarrusso said it was voluntary and would prefer to have a condition to not exceed the requirements of the regulations. 

 

Mr. McNamara was concerned with the legalities because the use was an existing non-conforming use.  He wanted to know if the Code Enforcement Officer should handle the issue of decreasing the sign.  Mr. Mitchell asked if the sign was being moved.  Mr. Giarrusso said the sign would be placed in the same location, but would be smaller.  Mr. Mitchell cautioned the Board and said that once a non-conforming use had been established the courts were powerful about interference. 

 

There was no public input.

 

MOTION:

(Culbert/Scanzani) To accept the plan for consideration.

 

VOTE:  

(6 - 0 - 0) The motion carries.

 

Mr. Danevich discussed the constraints as being, the maximum height, width and footage are not to exceed the current as specified now.  Mr. Culbert noted that because the use was a natural expansion of a non-conforming use he was uneasy bringing the size down to 50 square feet, but would rather stipulate that the sign could not be larger than it currently was.  He made a motion to approve the plan so that the sign would be no larger than the current size.  Mr. Danevich made a friendly amendment as follows: 1) sign not to exceed current height; 2) sign not to exceed current width; 3) sign not to exceed current square feet; 4) canopy is viewed as a natural expansion; and 5) placement of sign will be in the same spot.  Mr. Culbert agreed to the amendment, Mr. Scanzani seconded. 

 

MOTION:

(Culbert/Scanzani) To approve the plan with the following conditions:

1) sign not to exceed current height;

2) sign not to exceed current width;

3) sign not to exceed current square feet;

4) canopy is viewed as a natural expansion;

5) placement of sign will be in the same spot.

 

VOTE:

(6 - 0 - 0) The motion carries.

 

ML 13-39 Schaver Environmental Consultants - Youngs Crossing Road - Special Permit

 

Mr. Scanzani read aloud the list of abutters. There were no persons present whom did not have their name read.

 

Mr. Danevich asked if the landowner or their representative were present.  No one stepped forward. 

 

Mr. Keith Murray, Meisner Brem offered the Board limited information and said his understanding was that the application should have been withdrawn without prejudice.  Mr. Mitchell had no knowledge of that fact.  He gave a brief background.  The Board briefly discussed the situation and decided they were not comfortable to make a decision without proper representation, and further decided to deny the permit. 

 

MOTION:

(Scanzani/Culbert) To deny the special permit due to the following: 1) no one was present to explain the special permit request; 2) application was not complete; and 3) WCD not correctly delineated.

 

VOTE:  

(6 - 0 - 0) The motion carries.

 

ML 10-361 Gagnon/V & G Development Corp. - Dutton Road - 1-Lot Subdivision for Consideration

 

Mr. Scanzani read aloud the list of abutters. There were no persons present whom did not have their name read.

 

Mr. Keith Murray, Meisner Brem, presented the plan to the Board.  He said they were requesting a one-lot subdivision, which met with all zoning requirements.  He said any structures within the offsets would be removed any outside the offsets would remain.  He said they had a drainage easement, HISS mapping and the wetlands were flagged by Gove Environmental.  He said the remaining area would be subdivided and a plan would be submitted within the next month.

 

Mr. Mitchell said his concern was the timing of the removal of the buildings and suggested that before the rear parcel was considered for approval that the buildings be removed.  Mr. Culbert suggested having the buildings removed before the plans were signed. 

 

Mr. Culbert asked Mr. Murray to point out the proposed road for the upcoming subdivision.  He wanted to know why the proposed subdivision lot was not squared.  Mr. Murray said the area was a portion of a lot being created for the rest of the subdivision. 

 

Mr. Lynde wanted to know if the proposed lot was approved if it would create a non-conforming business, which was not allowed in the current zoning.  Mr. Culbert said that when the lot was subdivided, they wouldn’t be able to have a farm stand.  Mr. Danevich said if they did run a business, it would be a code enforcement issue. 

 

There was no public input.

 

MOTION:

(Culbert/Scanzani) To accept the 2-Lot plan for consideration.

 

VOTE:

(6 - 0 - 0) The motion carries.

 

Mr. Danevich noted the stipulations for approval as follows: 1) cease of business operation and 2) raise buildings prior to signature of the plans.  There was a discussion regarding which buildings would be raised.  It was decided that there were three buildings (two greenhouses and a turkey coop) within the one-lot subdivision that needed to be raised.  The Board further discussed which buildings needed to be raised and the following motion was stated.

 

MOTION:

(Culbert/McNamara) To accept the plan for consideration with the following conditions: 1) cease of business operation;

2) to raise all buildings as noted on plan prior to signing.

 

VOTE:  

(6 - 0 - 0) The motion carries.

 

ML 3-137 Raytheon - 50 Bush Hill Road - Site Plan for Consideration

 

Mr. Lynde stepped down due to possible conflict of interest.

 

Mr. Scanzani read aloud the list of abutters. There were no persons present whom did not have their name read.

 

Mr. Bill Cummings, Raytheon presented the plan for consideration.  He said they were proposing a 500 square foot electrical shed and to add a concrete pad.  He said the property was approximately 47 acres.

 

Mr. Culbert asked that the testing areas be pointed out.  He then asked if the shed would be an expansion.  Mr. Cummings answered no.  Mr. Culbert noted that in the past there had been noise complaints.  Mr. Cummings said that the shed would hold their electrical equipment.  He said he was aware of past complaints and since changed the equipment to damper the noise.  Mr. Culbert wanted to ensure that proper consideration was being given to the noise factor.  Mr. Cummings said the plan had been brought before the Board of Adjustment and they had moved some of the equipment to another location.  He said there hadn’t been any complaints regarding noise in the area of the proposed electrical shed. 

 

Mr. Steve Black, Raytheon said that Raytheon had leased long term (until approx. 2033) approximately twenty acres to the North of the parcel to address the noise concern.  He said the past complaints were a significant distance away from the proposed.  Mr. Danevich asked if the generators were diesel or if there would be long-term temporary power.  Mr. Black answered no and explained the type of equipment that would be used.  Mr. Mitchell asked if the same test were being performed as were being done nine years ago.  Mr. Cummings answered yes and noted they hadn’t received any complaints in that area. 

 

Mr. Scanzani wanted to know why the building needed to be 500 square feet.  Mr. Cummings said they had high ampage equipment that needed to be protected and serviceable.  Mr. Scanzani asked if there would be an increase in noise.  Mr. Cummings didn’t anticipate any additional noise. 

 

Mr. Culbert asked if the patriot radar would be enclosed.  Mr. Cummings said it wouldn’t and explained that it was currently running outside now.  He said that it would be placed on a sturdier pad. 

 

 

PUBLIC INPUT

 

Mr. Hal Lynde, Jeremy Hill Road, speaking as a resident, wanted to know why they were using concrete and not asphalt and asked if it was an expansion of use.  Mr. Cummings said they needed to put the equipment on a firm base, but it would not be an added use, they were only relocating the equipment. 

Mr. Lynde asked if they would be adding lighting.  Mr. Cummings said they would be adding some, but it would be downward directed.  Mr. Lynde asked if there would be any planes or helicopters at the site.  Mr. Cummings said they didn’t necessarily bring in planes and helicopters. 

 

MOTION:

(Culbert/Scanzani) To accept the plan for consideration.

 

VOTE:  

(5 - 0 - 1) The motion carries.  Mr. Lynde had stepped down.

 

MOTION:

(Scanzani/Culbert) To approve the plan subject to:

1)       all illumination lighting at the proposed site to be downward directed;

2)       any construction being done in the area of the site, not to exceed current noise levels.

 

VOTE:  

(5 - 0 - 1) The motion carries.  Mr. Lynde had stepped down.

 

COMMITTEE REPORTS

 

Mr. Culbert informed that the Cul-de-sac sub-committee held their second meeting and reviewed surrounding Towns.  He said that the committee would prepare a draft proposal to be reviewed by the Safety Committee and CLD.  He anticipated the proposal to be complete within three months.  He said the items to be included would be cul-de-sac length, number of lots and creating community image.  Mr. Danevich asked if trip counts on roads would be implemented.  Mr. Culbert said that was included.  Mr. Scanzani felt that because there were more wetlands in Town that the issue of temporary versus permanent cul-de-sacs should also be reviewed. 

 

Mr. Lynde discussed bonds and asked if the period of time should be more than two years.  Mr. Danevich said there was a statute governing bond length.  Mr. Lynde discussed Arlene Drive Extension.  Mr. Mitchell said there was a bond for the road that was up for renewal.  He explained the bond language and felt that they should be drafted to stipulate if, at the end of two years, the bonding company didn’t receive a note from the Planning Board, the bonding company writes a check and send it to the Town.  There was a brief discussion regarding how and when roads are completed and the problems that arise during construction.  The Board then discussed when a bond is received.  Mr. Mitchell said that plans weren’t recorded until a bond was in place. 

 

Mr. Danevich said a draft copy of the Master Plan survey had been completed and asked that any comments be forwarded.

 

Mr. Danevich discussed the special meeting scheduled for May 24, 2001 to be held for the second graders.  He confirmed attendance and informed that it would be held from 9-10am. 

 

ADJOURNMENT

 

 A motion was made and seconded to adjourn the meeting.

 

The motion was adjourned at approximately 10:55 pm.

 

                                                                                                Respectfully submitted,

 

                                                                                                Charity A. L. Willis

                                                                                                Recording Secretary